Explaining Metonymy

We are looking forward to next week’s online Institute of Humanities research seminar.

Deirdre Wilson (University College London and Centre for the Study of Nature and Mind, Oslo) will be talking on ‘Explaining Metonymy’.

Deirdre is a leading figure in pragmatics and cognitive science. She is a co-founder, with Dan Sperber, of relevance theory, a very influential approach to cognition and communication which has since been applied in a wide range of areas.

The talk is at 16.10 UK time on Wednesday 17th of March.

All welcome.

Email billy.clark@northumbria.ac.uk for the link to join.

Here is an abstract for the talk:

Abstract

For two thousand years, figurative utterances such as metaphor, irony and metonymy have been seen as violations of a pragmatic rule, norm, or maxim of literal, plain speaking, and analysed in terms of arbitrary ‘transfer of meaning’ rules (e.g. ‘In irony, the literal meaning is replaced by its opposite’, ‘In metaphor, the literal meaning is replaced by a related simile or comparison’, or ‘In metonymy, the literal meaning is replaced by an associated attribute or adjunct’). Recently, attempts have been made to provide more explanatory accounts which shed light on why the same types of figurative utterances should arise in culture after culture. While some progress has been made with metaphor and irony, metonymy continues to present a serious challenge. Why should a rational speaker of (1)-(3) expect to be understood as referring to a patient, a customer or a group of people rather than a disease, a dish or a building, respectively, without the aid of arbitrary ‘transfer of meaning’ rules?

(1)       The appendicitis in bed 3 is threatening to write to the newspapers

(2)       Can you take the pepperoni pizza his glass of wine?

(3)       Buckingham Palace is refusing to comment.

In this talk, I will outline a new approach to metonymy (developed jointly with Ingrid Lossius Falkum) which may help to meet this challenge. On this approach, metonymy is a type of neologism, or word coinage, and is understood in exactly the same way as other types of word coinage, needing no special ‘transfer of meaning’ rules or mechanisms.

Language and Linguistics Seminars at Northumbria

Please note: this list has been updated following the postponement of talks on the 23rd of April and 19th of May

We have an exciting line-up in our Language and Linguistics research seminar series this semester.

Like many others, we’ve been enjoying the opportunity to join seminars online and to welcome online visitors to our events this year.

All are welcome to these.

Email billy.clark@northumbria.ac.uk for more information.

We’ll let you know if there any additions to the programme,


Northumbria Language and Linguistics Research Seminars Semester 2 2020-2021

12/03/2021 – 16:00-17:00
Sarah Kelly – University College Dublin    
“Examining the linguistic properties of threatening communications”  

Click here to join the meeting 

17/03/2021 – 16:10-17:30 – Joint seminar with the Institute of Humanities
Deirdre Wilson – University College London
“Explaining Metonymy”  

Click here to join the meeting 

POSTPONED: 23/04/2021 – 16:00-16:45
Sameeha Al Ahmadi – Northumbria University
“The Effect of Gender on the Nativisation and Lexical Density of Tweets by Saudi Bloggers: A Corpus Based Study “ 

Click here to join the meeting 

30/04/2021 – 16:00-17:10
Kingsley Ugwuanyi  – Northumbria University
“Linguistic ownership among speakers of Nigerian English”, 

Judith Taylor – Northumbria University
“Evaluations, impressions, and affiliations; measuring language regard amongst gen-Z Geordies” 

Click here to join the meeting 

07/05/2021 – 16:00-17:00
Sarah Duffy – Northumbria University
“Winter is coming… or are we coming up to winter? An exploration of two contrasting perspectives on time”  

Click here to join the meeting 

POSTPONED: 19/05/2021 – 16:10-17:30  – Joint seminar with Institute of Humanities
Louise Pybus – Northumbria University
“Language, identity and the school curriculum: challenges and opportunities for students with EAL in rural secondary school contexts” 

14th Newcastle and Northumbria PG Conference in Linguistics

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Call for Papers

The abstract submission for the 14th Newcastle Northumbria Postgraduate Conference in Linguistics is now open.

This one-day conference will provide an opportunity for linguistics postgraduates to present and discuss their research in an informal and intellectually stimulating setting. The conference will be held on Thursday the 2nd of April 2020.

Submission Guidelines

We would like to invite linguistics postgraduates from all research areas of linguistics, both theoretical and applied, from any institution to submit abstracts for oral and poster presentations.

 

The following submission link leads to an external website, EasyChair. You need to register on EasyChair to be able to submit your abstract.

Submissions link

SUBMIT YOUR ABSTRACT HERE

Abstracts should be no more than 500 words long and a maximum of 1 A4 page of text. References, glossed/transcribed examples, and images can appear on a second page and do not count toward the word limit. Abstracts should be submitted as PDF documents (.pdf) and be fully anonymised, including metadata. All submissions will be anonymously reviewed. Authors may submit a maximum of two abstracts, only one of which may be sole-/first-authored. Acceptance will be conditional on at least one of the authors registering for the conference.

 

Key dates

Abstract submission deadline: 7th February 2020

Extended submission deadline: 10th February 2020

Notification of acceptance: 6th March 2020

Conference registration deadline: 20th March 2020

Contact

Please email general queries to nnpcil@newcastle.ac.uk. If you are having problems with the Easy Chair link please email j.belur-rajeev2@newcastle.com.

Please visit the website for further information:

14th Newcastle & Northumbria Postgraduate Conference in Linguistics

Separated By A Common Language?

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We are delighted to announce that Professor Lynne Murphy, from the University of Sussex  will be delivering the Northumbria Annual Linguistics Lecture on our city campus at 6pm on Wednesday the 20th of June.

Lynne is a very engaging speaker and this will be a fun and fascinating talk.

The event is free and open to all. Places are limited so book here to make sure you reserve a place:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/northumbria-annual-linguistics-lecture-2018-tickets-45985097665

Time and date: 6pm, 20 June 2018

Location: Lipman Lecture Theatre (Lipman 031), Lipman Building, Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 8ST

Directions and campus map: https://www.northumbria.ac.uk/about-us/our-campuses/newcastle-city-campus/

Title: Separated by a Common Language? the complicated relationship between American & British English

Summary:

When faced with British English, Americans are apt to be impressed and are often made a bit insecure about their own linguistic abilities. When thinking about American English, Britons often express dismissiveness or fear. This has been going on for nearly 300 years, developing into a complex mythology of British–American linguistic relations.

This talk looks into the current state of the “special relationship” between the two national standards. How did we get to the point that the BBC publishes headlines like “How Americanisms are killing the English language” while Americans tweet “Everything sounds better in a British accent”? The answer is in a broad set of problematic beliefs. We’ll look at how different the two national Englishes are (and why they’re not more different), why neither has claim to being older than the other, and why technology isn’t making us all speak or write the same English.

About Lynne:

Lynne Murphy is Professor of Linguistics at the University of Sussex in Brighton, England. Since 2006, her alter ego Lynneguist has written the Separated by a Common Language blog. There, she reflects on UK–US linguistic differences from the perspective of an American linguist in England, while fighting the good fight against linguistic myths and prejudice. She continues that fight in The Prodigal Tongue: The Love–Hate Relationship between British and American English (Oneworld, 2018).

Queries and further information: If you have any questions about the event, please contact Billy Clark: billy.clark@northumbria.ac.uk